April 27, 2009

GM Canada to shrink dramatically

General Motors Canada is phasing out more than 50 percent of its hourly workforce in line with its U.S. parent's plans announced Monday, the company said.

The troubled car maker said by 2014, it will employ about 4,400 manufacturing workers, down from 10,300 last year, The Globe and Mail reported.

GM also said it was reducing the number of its retail dealerships by 42 percent by the end of 2010, from 705 to as few as 395 outlets. The dealerships now employ about 33,000 people, the Toronto newspaper reported.

The cutbacks are identical in scope to plans the car maker announced for its U.S. operations in Detroit Monday. There, GM is cutting 21,000 jobs and eliminating the Pontiac brand, the company said.

GM Canada and Chrysler Canada have been receiving bridge-financing loans from the federal Canadian government and the provincial government of Ontario, since last year's economic downturn and recession.